Skip to main content

What Brain Surgery Reveals about How the Brain Works.

Neurophysiologist William Calvin. He assisted in neurosurgery on a patient named Neil. Neil was to have a portion of his temporal lobe removed to cure his severe epilepsy. But the neurosurgeon, George Ojemann, had to know where to cut. A mistake could cost Neil part of his normal brain function. So, while Neil was awake on the operating table, Dr. Ojemann, probed and stimulated Neil's exposed brain, the whole time carrying on a conversation with the patient. The purpose was to create a detailed roadmap of Neil's brain functioning. Calvin and co-author George Ojemann wrote about this surgical journey in their new book "Conversations with Neil's Brain: the Neural Nature of Thought and Language" (Addison-Wesley).

15:08

Other segments from the episode on May 10, 1994

Fresh Air with Terry Gross, May 10, 1994: Interview with John Dominic Crossan; Interview with William Calvin; Review of The Hollywood String Quartet's album "The Hollywood String Quartet."

Transcript

Transcript currently not available.

Transcripts are created on a rush deadline, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of Fresh Air interviews and reviews are the audio recordings of each segment.

You May Also like

Did you know you can create a shareable playlist?

Advertisement

Recently on Fresh Air Available to Play on NPR

52:30

A more moderate Taliban? An Afghan journalist says nothing has changed

Afghan British journalist Najibullah Quraishi has had trouble sleeping for more than two hours a stretch ever since the U.S. withdrew troops from Afghanistan in August and the Taliban came back into power. Quraishi grew up in Afghanistan under Soviet and Taliban rule, and began reporting on the Taliban before the Sept. 11, 2001, al-Qaida attacks and the onset of the U.S. Afghan war. He's currently in Kabul reporting for his upcoming PBS Frontline documentary, Taliban Takeover, (airing Oct. 12) which details life in Afghanistan now.

There are more than 22,000 Fresh Air segments.

Let us help you find exactly what you want to hear.

Playing

Just play me something
Your Queue

Would you like to make a playlist based on your queue?

Generate & Share View/Edit Your Queue